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What is Customer Engagement?
A quote from Paul Greenburg, who works for Hubspot, said:
“Customer engagement is the ongoing interaction between the company and the customer, offered by the company chosen by the customer.”
Customer Engagement is one of the top buzzwords used throughout online businesses today. Although everyone will describe customer engagement from different angles, how it is perceived and portrayed is uniquely based on each company. In everyday life, we are constantly engaging with people we see, both through online and in-person interactions. With a business, they engage with their customers while adhering to their specific brands. Engagement varies between each business. However, it solely relies on the same principles. Let’s face it, engagement is everywhere.
What can customer engagement provide for a business?
- A stronger and healthier customer relationship with an improved level of loyalty
- Increase your retention ratings, which then spikes your total sales
- Present the opportunity to upsell and cross-sell your products and services
- Boost your social media following
- Fully distinguish your brand’s identity
All in all, committing and strategizing your plan to enhance customer engagement comes with its full range of amazing benefits, that can only continue onward as your business grows.
Customer engagement involves actively interacting with your audience with different forms of messaging that interest, educate, motivate, and encourage continuous two-way conversations with your business depending on their stage in the buying journey. Whether they have just begun researching your company or have been a loyal purchaser since the beginning, consistency is key. You always want to make the customer feel as if they are a part of your brand’s journey.
Ways to Engage:
There is no such thing as a bad question. With how the world is continually changing and new strategies are being implemented, there will always be a question that has to be asked to grasp the new information that is being presented.
Never be afraid to ask for help, even if you have been doing this specific thing for years. There is not one person or business that knows everything about what they are presenting. To increase customer engagement, being able to ask your customers questions about their specific needs, wants, and preferences are highly recommended.
Create Actionable or Entertaining Content
Actionable content is what is implemented by customers. In other words, this type of content is what is found as relevant, entertaining, and unique by the audience. One of the best examples of actionable content is ‘how-to’ posts. If a customer presents you with a question about how your product or service works, creating a video to answer their question increases the engagement with the customer. It will not only answer the question for the single viewer but also simplify the process for many more who visit your website and social media channels.
How do you use actionable content?
- Don’t just tell, explain!
- Use visuals
- Be creative
- Address the most common questions or issues
- Add your own personal spin to make it unique to your brand
Following these steps will not only create new content, but it will also increase the engagement experience with your customer base.
Streaming live content is a fun and creative way to increase customer engagement. While you are discussing a topic on a live stream, your viewers can ask questions at the same time. This will continue the conversation. Being able to address any questions, comments, or concerns at their immediate request will enhance their experience and, thus, increase the chances of them purchasing from your brand again.
You can also incorporate polls and surveys here before hosting the live video by asking customers what they want to discuss or having them ask questions beforehand. Letting customers know in advance will allow them to plan accordingly, so they can join in and enjoy the show!
Social Media – Comments, Stories/Polls, Direct/Private Messaging
There is much more to social media than just posting a photo to Instagram. Engaging with your customer can be through multiple avenues that enhance the overall experience.
- Conducting polls or surveys are a great way to not only engage with the customer but also gather data for future posts. The survey questions could be about what customers want to see more of from a business.
- Utilizing private messaging is critical when a business wants to increase customer satisfaction and retention. When a customer sends a message, it is important to respond within 24 hours of receiving the message, so the customer feels valued. Even if the message is short and sweet, sometimes the statement “less is more” can make a significant impact.
- Commenting is one of the most important things to do when posting to social media. If a customer interacts with a post, comment back! This will help establish a future relationship with this customer, and hopefully have them come back for future content. Customers love companies that engage, plain and simple.
Emails – Newsletters/Clubs
Nothing is more creative than designing a fun and interactive newsletter to present to your customer base. A newsletter is a scheduled piece of marketing material that highlights incoming updates for a business, including new team members, upcoming events, and additional information that gets a following excited for what is ahead.
Whether the newsletter is weekly or monthly, maintaining a consistent content calendar and schedule is imperative if increasing customer engagement is the goal.
Launch a Loyalty Program
If you have a customer base that is fully engaged, then they will become emotionally invested in your business’s brand and what it has to offer. The emotional investment piece to the puzzle is what causes them to commit to your products and services instead of the nearest competitor. This is what we call, “Customer Loyalty.”
A loyalty program offers customers different incentives for choosing your business over others. For example:
- Awarding customers through a point system lets customers stack up points after every purchase and splurge them on a specific item later on.
- Having them get involved on social media allows them to promote your brand with their friends, which then increases the chances of your social’s following and engagement to increase. This increase will also result in more sales – wahoo!
- Referrals are the greatest compliments a business can receive because previous customers are bringing in new purchases that will last. Since their friends buy from you, why shouldn’t they too? For every referral, the customer will receive a $5 voucher off of their next purchase. The more referrals they bring, the more money that will come in from new customers. It’s a win-win.
Consistent, timely customer engagement can lead to a positive customer experience that will ultimately help grow your business. If you need help, we offer several solutions for improving the customer experience for anyone who interacts with your brand!